Our society is currently evolving towards artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, transhumanism, industry 4.0, quantum computing, blockchain... This will alter the way we live, work and think. Some view these evolutions with caution, whilst others welcome them with open arms.
In this minor we aim to develop a critical awareness of arguments on either side; considering potential threats to, among others, equality and democracy, as well as examining new opportunities like e-business, e-health and e-governance.
Many objects are now connected to the internet. Smart watches, for instance, can be connected to other devices through network facilities. These items are nothing more than commonly known ideas or systems with an upgrade, equipped with sensors and collecting data. We take a closer look at people’s motivations to develop new kinds of interconnected technology. Which goals are they trying to achieve?
GIGO is a computer science acronym meaning ’Garbage In, Garbage Out’. It makes a clear distinction between the system and its user. Most people tend to forget that technology on itself is harmless; the output quality of a system depends entirely on what people put into it. We focus on the weakest link: people, as individuals or organizations, handling the systems. The so-called human factor. We examine causes of instabilities and solutions for people to maintain a healthy balance, to hold sensible online relationships, enforce digital citizenship & stay resilient in cyberspace.
Technology always moves at a faster pace than society itself and thereby affects all aspects of human life. What impact does this have on our human rights? Knowing the legal framework and being able to think independently based on different opinions, is crucial. In this minor we also look at difficult ethical dilemmas which digitalisation brings along. For example, what about artificially upgrading people, the debates about quality of life and even the use of technology to kill?